4.11.2006

To All the Phone Operators I've Dissed

I want to say, I'm sorry. I hope you know it's not personal. I know you are merely a tool of some evil corporation that's abusing you just as much as it's abusing me by not training you properly, paying you enough, or giving you adequate tools to handle the types of calls you get. I don't mean to be rude, but your corporate overlords give you such long-winded, time-wasting scripts to read to me that I get really irritable on the second or third transfer, when I have to hear the spiel over again and give you all my detailed security information again (you do realize I already told all that info to someone else, who probably works just a cubicle over from you, in addition to having typed it all in when the computer prompted me during the very first part of my call?). But I have to remind myself that if it feels to me like I'm being transferred around various circles of Hell, I don't even want to imagine what it must be like to be you, who actually work there. (It's too bad, isn't it, that you'd probably get fired for being honest with me and telling me you hate the company you work for as much as I do.) I have to remind myself that at least I get to hang up and get back to my regular job, right? That's why I'm sorry. I'll try to stay calm next time. All I ask is this: If I tell you I don't want any last-minute marketing pitches or special offers or surveys because I've already been on the phone with you (and two or three of your colleagues) for 20 minutes, then please, just let me go. That way we can both be put out of our misery as quickly as possible. That way we can both have a better tomorrow.

Signed,
A Disgruntled Former AOL, Sprint, American Express, Wells Fargo (this list could grow, but let's work together to make it not) Customer

5 comments:

jfh said...

Oh, nice to have sympathy for them. That's very tolerant of you. I'm talking about telemarketers and I don't let them talk, just drown them out with my "Thanks so much for calling, I just don't need anymore of anything in my life. BYE."

Jennifer said...

Well, I'm not sure if I have sympathy in the moment, but I wrote this in an effort to remind myself to have sympathy or compassion more often. Telemarketers are definitely in still another circle of Hell.zjc

sarah ellerman said...

Forget the people for one moment; let's talk about the machines! The most maddening moment of the whole encounter is when you type in your 16-digit account number, then have it ponderously read back to you by a voice simulator. You affirm that this is your account, maybe even add the last 4 of your Social. The phone starts ringing, and you're finally voice-to-voice with someone. "Account number?" they ask, in a bored tone. And they're not verifying against what you input already. Oh no. That's gone into a black hole. It's just a little keypad game you play to amuse yourself while on hold. They want to start at the very beginning. Why, why, and why?

sarah ellerman said...

Also wanted to say I appreciate the spirit in which you approach the phone operators, understanding that they have evil overlords. Because they do. Overlords who tape their conversations and three-way into the conversations and also yell at them if their call-per-minute volume falls. These overlords most often take the form of disguised lizard people in business casual.

Jennifer said...

sarah, LOL. I'm so glad someone else understands. Why do they bother having me type stuff in if I'm going to have to repeat everything!

You remind me of another facet: the new "voice recognition" software they have. "I'm sorry, I didn't understand you, please repeat!" Well, yeah, you didn't understand me because...YOU'RE A COMPUTER!